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October 2021

Lipids. 1997 Jun; 32(6): 635-44.

The effect of short-term diets rich in fish, red meat, or white meat on thromboxane and prostacyclin synthesis in humans.

Mann N, Sinclair A, Pille M, Johnson L, Warrick G, Reder E, Lorenz R.

School of Nutrition and Public Health, Deakin University, Geelong, Victoria, Australia. [email protected]

Foods which increase tissue arachidonic acid levels have been proposed to increase thrombosis tendency, presumably through increased platelet aggregation. This study examined the effect of doubling the dietary arachidonic acid (20:4n-6) using meat- or fish-based diets on the systemic production of prostacyclin (PGI2) and thromboxane (TXA2) in 29 healthy, nonsmoking adults. There were three, 3-wk low-fat dietary periods (< 15% energy as fat) in which subjects consumed a vegetarian diet for 1 wk followed by 2 wk on diets containing meat or fish as sources of 20:4n-6. Between each diet period, there was a 3-wk washout period, during which subjects returned to their normal diets. The level of 20:4n-6 consumed during the last 2 wk of each study was approximately double the usual intake (mean 140 mg/d), while the mean eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n-3) content of the diets varied from 1 mg/d on the white meat diet to 70 mg/d on the red meat diet and to 847 mg/d on the fish diet. The serum phospholipid (PL) 20:4n-6/20:5n-3 ratios were 11:1 on the vegetarian diet, 15:1 on the white meat diet, 8:1 on the red meat diet, and 2:1 on the fish diet (P < 0.001). Neither white nor red meat diets affected platelet 20:4n-6 levels, platelet aggregation, ex vivo platelet TXB2 production, or the systemic PGI2 or TXA2 production as measured by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis of the excretion levels of the principal urinary metabolites 2,3-dinor-6-keto-PGF1 alpha (PGI2-M) and 11-dehydro-TXB2 (TXA2-M), respectively. The fish diet decreased the 20:4n-6/20:5n-3 ratio in platelet PL from the baseline level of 45:1 to 13:1 (P < 0.001), had no effects on platelet aggregation, but significantly decreased platelet TXB2 production (collagen-stimulated) and TXA2-M production, while PGI2-M levels were unaltered. These results indicate that short-term diets which double the usual 20:4n-6 intake using white meat (175-330 g/d) or red meat (275-530 g/d) are not associated with an increased TXA2 production, but this does not rule out the adverse effects of 20:4n-6 at higher levels in the diet, or for more prolonged periods. Short-term diets containing fish (100-200 g/d with 90-210 mg/d 20:4n-6 and approximately 650-1000 mg/d 20:5n-3) led to significant increases in platelet 20:5n-3 levels and a decrease in the ex vivo and systemic TXA2 production.


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